Metsu, Gabriel

Metsu or Metzu, Gabriel

(both: gä`brēĕl mĕt`sü), 1630?–1667, Dutch genre painter, b. Leiden. In 1657 he moved to Amsterdam, where he remained for the rest of his life. In his youth he painted biblical subjects, such as Woman Taken in Adultery (Louvre), which show Rembrandt's influence. His true gift was for genre, and he is best known for his quiet, charming interiors that reveal the influence of DouDou, Dow, or Douw, Gerard or Gerrit
, 1613–1675, Dutch genre and portrait painter of Leiden.
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, his teacher. His work is distinguished by fine draftsmanship and exquisite handling of light and texture. Among his well-known works are Music Lesson (The Hague); Duet (National Gall., London); Mother with a Sick Child (c.1660, Amsterdam); Music Lesson, Visit to the Nursery, and Tavern Scene (all: Metropolitan Mus.).
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The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

Metsu, Gabriel


Born January 1629 in Leiden; buried Oct. 24, 1667, in Amsterdam. Dutch genre painter.

Metsu worked in Leiden and later in Amsterdam. His works, which reflect the influence of Rembrandt, G. Terborch, and J. Vermeer, are marked by a fine handling of chiaroscuro and a skillful rendering of the texture of objects and fabrics. Metsu’s palette is based on subtle color contrasts. The artist’s depictions of scenes from the everyday life of burghers are permeated with an even, somewhat phlegmatic mood (The Sick Child, c. 1660, Rijksmuseum, Amsterdam; Patient and Doctor, Hermitage, Leningrad).


Vipper, B. R. “O tvorcheskoi evoliutsii Gabrielia Metsu.” In Iz istorii russkogo i zapadnoevropeiskogo iskusstva. Moscow, 1960. Pages 314–24.
Gabriel Metsu: Tentoonstellung. [Catalog.] Leiden, 1966.
The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.